Revealed - Why Zlatan Ibrahimovic's move to Man Utd cannot be announced yet
Published 08/06/2016 | 02:30
Manchester United are prepared to delay the signing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic on a free transfer until next month so that the striker can collect a large loyalty bonus from Paris St-Germain.
Ibrahimovic told reporters at a launch for his new A-Z fashion range that they would have to be patient before finding out where he would play next season.
The 34-year-old and his agent, Mino Raiola, have held positive talks with United about signing for manager Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford, but there is a lucrative reason why the pair may be keen to hold off on confirming the deal, with Ibrahimovic and Raiola both due a large loyalty bonus from PSG should the forward see out his contract, which expires on June 30.
At that point, Ibrahimovic officially becomes a free agent and United are prepared to hand him a one-year contract worth £250,000 a week, with the option of a further 12 months.
Ibrahimovic had planned to confirm his club future ahead of Sweden's Euro 2016 opener against the Republic of Ireland in Paris next Monday, but the former Juventus, Barcelona and Inter Milan player is confident a deal with United is in place and it just needs signing once his PSG contract is completed.
Asked about his next destination in Paris yesterday, Ibrahimovic said: "There is no confirmation. No saying, 'Yes'.
"You will have to be patient with me. I want you to keep wondering where I will go. Keep making stories and, when I am tired, I will let you know my next destination."
Sweden's captain added: "My future is A-Z. There will also be A-Z in Manchester."
On his decision not to stay at PSG, with whom he won four league titles but not the Champions League, Ibrahimovic said: "If I wanted, I could have stayed five more years. There comes a point when you have done everything. Mission accomplished."
Ibrahimovic hit 50 goals in 51 appearances for PSG last season and is viewed by Mourinho as the man to solve United's goalscoring problems and help the development of Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford.
Although they did not work together for long at Inter, Mourinho and Ibrahimovic (right) have remained close friends over the past seven years, with the striker even helping to settle a dispute between the Portuguese and West Brom's Swedish defender Jonas Olsson.
United are close to sealing a £30m deal for Villarreal defender Eric Bailly after flying the Ivory Coast international into Manchester for a medical. Bailly (22) has emerged as one of the most sought-after defenders in La Liga after impressing at Villarreal since arriving at El Madrigal from Espanyol in a £4.4m deal in January 2015.
Barcelona, looking to replace Juventus-bound Javier Mascherano at the heart of their defence, have also being tracking Bailly.
Mourinho is now likely to turn his focus on getting Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba, 12 months after failing to engineer a deal to take the France international to Chelsea.
Elsewhere, Jamie Vardy has put a decision on whether to join Arsenal on hold until after the European Championship finals.
Meanwhile, Everton have agreed a compensation package with Southampton for manager Ronald Koeman worth around £5m, but a formal announcement is not expected until later in the week as talks over personal terms continue.
Koeman, who has been promised a big budget for new players, is expected to sign a three-year contract worth around £7m a year.
His brother Erwin and fitness coach Jan Kluitenberg are also expected to move from St Mary's to Goodison Park. (© Daily Telegraph, London)